“Tell me all that you know about a Peanut Butter & Jelly,” I asked a student who I work with outside of school.
She looked at me like I had two heads. I knew that she was thinking something like, “What do you mean? Everything you need to know is in the name, peanut butter and jelly.”
“I know, I know. But, start talking to me about all that you know about a Peanut Butter & Jelly,” I nudged.
She started talking.
“Well, you start with some bread, then you probably need a knife or two, and you take out whatever jelly you have in the fridge and peanut butter, too.”
“Mhmmm. Go on,” I suggested.
“You put peanut butter on one side and jelly on the other. Then, you put the two pieces of bread together. Some people like it cut diagonally and some like it just like normal. My brother needs the crust cut off of his. I make sure I have a glass of milk with my peanut butter and jelly,” she shared.
“So, does everyone eat the same kind of bread?,” I asked some follow up questions.
What she didn’t know was that while she was explaining the world of PB & J’s to me, I was taking notes on a Jamboard. Afterwards, I shared this Jamboard with her and asked her to categorize the information into sections, or chapters. We were transitioning into information writing and this was going to be our starting place – a shared informational book on Peanut Butter & Jelly.
Here’s what she came up with. She could have categorized it by colored sticky notes, but, we decided to put similar post-it notes near each other. That’s how we would know that those pieces of information would go together in a section.
“What would you call each section?,” I asked her and we brainstormed section tittles. She wrote those section headings in a shared Google Document.
“Alright, A, you have this Jamboard as our rough outline for our informational book. We have our sections planned out and we know what to include in each section. Don’t forget an introduction and conclusion!,” I instructed.
She was off. I was mentally picturing my cabinets to see if I had the fixings for a PB & J.